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The power of choice is BMW’s big bet on the future

BMW’s plan to bring sustainable mobility forward is to keep drivers in charge.

The power of choice is BMW’s big bet on the future

The BMW X3 xDrive30e is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle that combines a four-cylinder internal combustion engine with an electric motor. Photos: BMW

It’s one thing to know where you’re going, but quite another to know how to get there. Likewise, while it’s commonly accepted that electric cars are the future of mobility, it’s worth pondering a host of vital questions now: How far away is that future? What’s the surest way to get there? What if not everyone is moving forward at the same speed?

BMW is one car manufacturer with a map to sustainable mobility, and it shows several routes there, because even radical change takes time. Believe it or not, even though the invention of the car was hugely disruptive to the horse, the United States still needed 20 years to go from zero to 95 per cent market penetration.

Likewise, BMW’s forecasts show that there isn’t a magic wand that will suddenly sweep all of today’s cars aside and put electric vehicles (EVs) in their place. Instead, multiple powertrain solutions — petrol, plug-in hybrid and full electric-drive systems — will coexist for a long time, perhaps the next 15 to 20 years. That’s because different drivers have different needs, and different countries will develop the necessary infrastructure for electric cars at different speeds.


As a manufacturer known for its powerful and characterful engines, BMW is well placed to continue developing cars with multiple powertrain options and to maintain a flexible approach to addressing future mobility requirements.

That’s the Power of Choice, a unique strategy that recognises that drivers are individuals with different priorities. “Our customers will always be able to choose the right drivetrain for their particular needs,” said BMW Group chairman and chief executive officer, Mr Oliver Zipse.

In Singapore, the BMW X3 amply demonstrates the Power of Choice. It’s currently available with powerful petrol and plug-in hybrid drivetrains here. But when BMW launches the iX3 in Singapore next year, it will introduce the option of pure-electric drive.

The X3 puts a handsome face on the Power of Choice. The double-kidney grille and rear lights take a three-dimensional form, and reinforce its muscular design. Meanwhile, the interior boasts a lavish finish with Vernasca Leather sports seats and a driver-focused cockpit, complete with BMW Live Cockpit Professional, the intelligent driver displays that put a wide range of information in clear view for the driver.

The X3 also comes with Driving Assistant, the advanced suite of driver aids that help make commutes safer. Forward-collision warning keeps a watchful eye for obstacles ahead, and the X3 can even identify pedestrians in its path. At city speeds, the automatic emergency braking system can detect a potential critical situation and stop or slow the BMW before impact.

The BMW X3 is sporty yet refined, roomy yet manoeuvrable. In Singapore, the BMW X3 sDrive20i and BMW X3 xDrive30i variants come with efficient four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engines as standard.


The BMW X3 xDrive30e's lithium-ion high-voltage battery enables pure-electric mobility with a range of up to 55 km.

At the same time, the BMW X3 xDrive30e adds a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) option for buyers who want a practical electrified car in the meantime while they consider going full electric in the future. It combines a four-cylinder combustion engine with an electric motor.

With a lithium-ion high-voltage battery built on the very latest cell technology, the plug-in hybrid BMW X3 enables pure-electric mobility with a range of 51 to 55 km. That’s enough to cover a typical day’s motoring in Singapore, meaning that for the plug-in hybrid BMW X3 driver, the era of emissions-free driving has already started.

The internal-combustion engine and electric motor can work together, generating up to 292hp, illustrating how low emissions and fuel consumption can still co-exist with exciting performance.

The BMW X3 xDrive30e offers the best of both worlds: Clean, nearly silent electric drive for urban conditions and short drives, or powerful combustion drive for longer trips.

The BMW xDrive30e still offers the surefooted handling and traction that comes with 50:50 weight distribution and the security of BMW’s xDrive all-wheel drive system, which distributes engine power to each wheel where it’s most needed for maximum road-holding.


But for drivers eager to make the switch to full electric mobility, the BMW iX3 is just around the corner.

Powered by BMW’s fifth-generation eDrive technology, it balances good performance characteristics with operating range and weight. It’s designed with a holistic approach to sustainability, minimising the use of rare-earth materials in the drivetrain.

The installation space required for batteries is kept to a minimum, so the BMW iX3’s interior continues to offer space and flexibility.

With a maximum output of 286hp and more than 500km of range from a single charge, the BMW iX3 melds a thrilling ride with practicality.


The BMW iX3 is progressive and futuristic and it is the latest in a strategic push by BMW to make sustainable mobility widely available. BMW and MINI cars with electrified drive systems are now offered in 74 markets worldwide, and as of last year, the BMW Group had sold more than 500,000 electrified vehicles. By the end of 2021, BMW expects that number to double.

In fact, electrification by BMW is proving to be a winning strategy even in this pandemic-affected year. In the first half of 2020, sales of electrified BMW and MINI vehicles increased by 3.4 per cent year-on-year. In the third quarter of 2020, sales of electrified BMW and MINI vehicles increased by almost 50 per cent year-on-year.

Yet the push for electrification isn’t merely about sales performance. The BMW Group has set ambitious sustainability targets for itself in the long term. It aims to put more than seven million vehicles with electrified drive systems on the road worldwide by 2030, two-thirds of them pure-electric variants. If it hits this target, its cars’ emissions will be reduced by around 40 per cent.

Chairman and chief executive Oliver Zipse has promised that BMW board members’ pay will be tied to the success of this plan. “We are not just making abstract statements. We have developed a detailed 10-year plan with annual interim goals up to 2030. We will report on our progress every year and measure ourselves against these targets,” he said in July. “The compensation of our Board of Management and executive management will also be tied to this.”

The Power of Choice may be a promise that BMW drivers will continue to be able to choose the best powertrain for their needs, but it’s clearly also part of an ambitious promise to decarbonise mobility. These are exciting times ahead and no matter what the future holds, we can be certain that this journey to electrification is a marathon worth running.

Visit BMW to find out more about their range of electrified vehicles.


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